4-6 okt International Street Medicine Symposium XIV in Rotterdam

International Street Medicine Symposium XIV

October 4-6, 2018 in Rotterdam, The Netherlands 


Great News!

The Street Medicine Institute is excited to announce the 14th annual International Street Medicine Symposium, to be held October 4-6, 2018, in Rotterdam, The Netherlands!  As in the last several years, a special pre-symposium Street Medicine 101 workshop will also be offered on Wednesday, October 3, 2018 for interested participants.  The Netherlands Streetdoctors Group (NSG) has generously agreed to serve as the local sponsoring organization.

Learning Activities

The International Street Medicine Symposium (ISMS) is the world’s premier educational event dedicated to the health care of rough-sleeper (unsheltered) homeless populations.  As always, the ISMS will offer an impressive slate of homeless health care experts from around the globe presenting clinical topics, innovations, research outcomes, and best practices relevant to street medicine through the popular format mix of large-group lectures, small-group workshops, and poster presentations.  Clinicians and non-clinicians are welcome to participate; we encourage and celebrate the diversity of professional roles and disciplines represented among participants.  We intend to offer continuing medical education credits for eligible clinicians.

Host City Spotlight

Highlighting the work of the Netherlands Streetdoctors Group and the City of Rotterdam, the 14thannual International Street Medicine Symposium presents an example of “an upstream approach to street medicine”.  Downtown Rotterdam was severely bombed in 1940, creating homelessness among many of its citizens.  This experience laid the groundwork for subsequent social policy and public commitment that refuses to allow rough sleeping as an acceptable living condition for its citizens.

The Dutch standard is to provide care that is accessible, affordable and of the highest possible quality, and is based on solidarity, including a universal social benefit and medical healthcare insurance system.  This system has been able to house and support those in need.  Notwithstanding, there has always been a subgroup in the population that is hard to serve or has hidden problems that only become visible after multiple problems have accumulated.  As a result, some people continued sleeping rough, in marginalized settings or in emergency and residence shelters.  In response to a growing number of homeless and rough-sleeping people in the Netherlands, specific national and local governmental policies and budgets have been introduced to fight homelessness in the last few decades.

Since the 1980s, Rotterdam has been providing outreach healthcare services in six shelters and services for homeless people by a passionate group of street nurses and street doctors.  These professionals have been pioneers and leaders in “care for the poor and homeless” inspiring many professionals, students, researchers, and policy makers over time.  Moreover, actively sharing lessons from the streets, building local networks, connecting with peers in hospitals and mental/addiction clinics, and services for social benefits, debt control, and rehabilitation programs have proven to be key factors to boost community care for those in highest need.

The Street Medicine Institute believes that, as a global community dedicated to improving the lives of people sleeping rough, we have much to learn about preventing and ending homelessness from the City of Rotterdam and the Netherlands Streetdoctors Group.

Reconnect and Re-energize

As consistently reported by past participants, one of the most valuable experiences of the ISMS is the opportunity to interact with street medicine colleagues from around the world.  Again, this year, program activities will incorporate time to reconnect with old friends, make new contacts, and share stories of the triumphs and challenges of this important work.  Participants will be inspired and re-energized as they renew a common commitment to improving the lives of their brothers and sisters living on the streets.

Program Schedule 

Click HERE for a preliminary program schedule.

Street Medicine 101 Workshop 

Back by popular demand, we are pleased to offer this special pre-symposium workshop.  This high-yield introductory session is targeted to those individuals and organizations that may be new to Street Medicine or in need of expert guidance to launch or enhance their Street Medicine activities. This workshop will provide an instructive overview of the history, principles, and practice of Street Medicine, followed by breakout sessions with experts in the field for personalized guidance and problem solving.  Since capacity for this workshop is limited and high demand is anticipated, participants must register in advance to attend.


Registration will open soon!  Starting this year, the Street Medicine Institute is excited to offer a 5% discount to members!  Membership is free and participants are highly encouraged to take advantage of this discount.  Click HERE to become a member of the Street Medicine Institute.

The following tiered registration fee structure respects the fact that ISMS participants come from a variety of disciplines with disparate financial resources.  It is informed by responses to surveys of prior years’ ISMS participants and is designed to offer significant value relative to other educational conferences or professional meetings of similar scope and quality.  If uncertain which tier is most appropriate for you, please contact the organizing committee at lfrye@streetmedicine.org prior to completing the registration process and submitting any relevant fees.  Registration rates for non-members are listed below.  All registration fees are listed and payable in US dollars.  If you are registering a group of people, each person must be registered individually.  Our website offers a Program Membership, through which multiple individuals may be registered and paid for.

Refunds of registration fees will only be granted for cancellations made in writing to lfrye@streetmedicine.orgbefore September 15, 2018; a 10% cancellation charge may apply.

All prices are listed at the non-member rate. For a 5% discount, click HERE to become a member of the Street Medicine Institute.